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6 Tips for Conducting Annual Performance Reviews

January 26th, 2018

It’s supposed to be the most wonderful time of the year. But, as the trusted choice for staffing services in Columbia, SC, True Group knows you might actually be dreading year’s end if you’re gearing up for performance reviews.

How can you conduct them in a way where they’re not a waste of time? Start with these six tips:

Prepare ahead of time.

When it comes to performance reviews, the wing-it approach doesn’t cut it. Instead, it’s important to plan ahead so you have a productive conversation with each staff member. To do so, send out a self-evaluation form to your employees ahead of time. Also, be sure to create an agenda you can follow to keep each conversation on track.

Think about the message you want to convey.

Before a review, take some time to think through each employee’s performance over the last year. What are their strengths? In what areas did they fall short? And what is the key message or messages you want them to walk away from your meeting knowing?

For some employees, you might want to get them on track toward a promotion. For others, it could be about performance improvement. And in other cases, there could be a certain skill you want them to acquire and master. The message will be different for each one; just make sure you take time beforehand to think through the direction you want individual reviews to take.

Go over the evaluation form.

During the initial part of the review, go through the evaluation form each employee completed. Talk through the highlights and lowlights of their year, and get their take on each one. If there are any special areas of concern, bring these up, too – but don’t focus your entire meeting on them. A review should be a well-rounded evaluation of overall performance, both good and bad. It shouldn’t simply focus on the negative.

Keep it a conversation.

A performance review should never be a lecture. If it becomes ones, your employee will grow disengaged and tune out. Instead, keep it a conversation where you’re both contributing to the process.

Create an action plan.

Once your employee knows where you stand with their performance, and they’ve brought up any areas they want to discuss, talk about next steps going forward. This includes short- and long-term goals for the year ahead. It also means talking about which specific steps you’ll both need to take to achieve those objectives. When you and your employee leave the meeting, it should be with a list of future goals you both agreed upon.

Follow up.

Performance reviews should happen more than once a year. Even if it’s simply a quick and casual conversation a few weeks later, you should plan to follow up with each employee to check in on progress and ensure they’re on track.

Conducting performance reviews takes a lot of time for managers. If you’re also in the middle of hiring – and need help with the process due to lack of time – call the experts at TRUE Group. As a leading staffing service in Columbia, SC, we can handle every aspect of your hiring function, so you can focus on other priorities and get better staffing results. Contact us today to learn more.

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